St. Ambrose Band

“Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.”
Psalm 100

Band is available to students in grades 4 to 8.

band playing in concertBand Program Director: Mr. Mark Sawasky with Garwood Whaley Music Program, the instrumental music education program for Diocese of Arlington Catholic Schools for the last 40 years.

The band at St. Ambrose School operates within the curriculum of classes as a pullout system on a weekly, rotating basis and was developed with the concept of educating the well-rounded child with comprehensive music education. A student’s spiritual, academic, and artistic development act together to form a complete, modern-day approach.

The St. Ambrose School Band draws student musicians from grades 4- 8. Grade 4 forms the major portion of the beginner band. However, beginners can come from any grade level from 4th to 8th and are highly encouraged to join. Our advanced band generally consists of students from 5th – 8th grade with at least one year of experience. The beginner and advanced programs take place on Thursdays during the school year. Advanced band members have classes during the school day and full band rehearsal after school, both once per week. The beginner band meets for classes only during the school day once per week. Both groups give concerts at school in the winter and spring. Furthermore, advanced band members participate in the Diocese of Arlington Band Festival and the Music in the Parks spring trip to Hershey Park, Kings Dominion, or Busch Gardens.

Each year Mr. Sawasky anticipates openings in both bands. The beginner program introduces six basic instruments for the first year student. They are as follows: Flute, clarinet, alto, sax, trumpet, trombone/baritone, and drums/percussion.

Our advanced band has all the standard instruments but tries to expand the instrumentation with larger instruments such as tuba, baritone, French horn, bass clarinet, and tenor sax.

These instruments are usually rented through a local store at the beginning of the school year. Beginners, because of age and size, are asked to stay with one of these instruments in the first year of band and will be allowed to consider other instruments after recommendation from the director.

There is a separate fee charged for this program. For more information please email Mr. Sawasky:

Band Registration Contract 2019-2020

Information for parents of band students

Here are some important band dates to add to your calendar:

  •          Thur., Aug. 29 – Student Demo 1:00 PM
  •         Thur., Sept. 5 – Parent’s Registration Night 6:30 PM
  •          Thur., Sept. 12 – First Lesson
  •          Thur., Dec. 12 – Christmas Concert (Proposed Date)
  •          Sat., Apr. 4 – Arlington Diocese Band Festival Advanced Band Only (Time TBD)
  •         Fri., May 1 – Adv. Band Field Trip, Kings Dominion
  •         Thur., May 28 – Spring Concert 6:30 PM (Proposed Date)

St. Ambrose Catholic School

3827 Woodburn Road, Annandale, VA 22003

Phone: 703-698-7171

Fax: 703-698-7170

St. Ambrose School admits students of any race, color, and national origin.

"Christ is everything to us" – St. Ambrose